Finding the right running shoes is essential for runners of any skill level. If this is all new to you and you’re just starting out, the thought of buying your first pair of running shoes can be daunting. The main aim should always be to get the pair for your feet, your running style and where you are going to run. We’ve got a range of trainers for all types of runner – from fully supportive styles for rocky trails and triathlons to lighter styles for flat road running. Something to bear in mind is that you don’t need to invest in the most expensive pair if you’re a beginner, we would always suggest trying different brands and styles to find the right shoe for you before fully committing.
To find out more information on trail running click here
Top Tips on How to Pick the Best Running Shoes
- Get started by walking first
- Determine your foot type (neutral arch, low arch or high arch)
- Remember and try on in person – have a walk around the store as this will give you an indication on fit.
- How much do you want to spend?
- What surface are you running on?
- How far will you be running for?
- What size of shoe should you get?
- What kind of style do you prefer?
- What socks are you running in?
It’s the same with anything really, having a budget in mind before you start looking is a great place to start. Running shoes can range from £20-£300 depending on how serious you are with the sport. Generally, most styles of trainers are updated every year so you’ll be able to grab your favourite style in the sale for a reasonable price if you’re savvy with deals and promotions.
Knowing what surface you’ll be running on is your next step as this will determine the type of running shoe. If you plan to run on flat pavements or roads, you maybe won’t need as much traction as someone who is trail running.
To find out more information on running styles click here
How far you’ll be running will determine the features you need to look out for:
A running shoe size is normally a half size larger than your typical shoe size. This is because when you run the shoe has to allow for the foot to expand when exercising. Feet also tend to swell when you’re exercising as your blood flow increases and so, having the extra room will give you freedom of movement. Sizes between brands tend to vary so we would recommend trying them all on before making your mind up. We would recommend looking at customer reviews on websites to determine your buying decision.
Style is personable and it varies from person to person. However, sticking with a shoe style that you’ve had and liked previously will help. We would also recommend a neutral shoe so that it’ll be easier pairing with your current activewear.
The right pair of socks will determine your overall success in terms of performance. Running socks have been designed to ventilate, wick away moisture and offer support in all the right places. Synthetic socks are popular however, we would recommend premium natural fibres such as merino wool. Merino wool is a natural material that is breathable, sweat-wicking and anti-bacterial – leaving your feet fresh, comfortable and dry.
The Ruairi lightweight men’s trainers are stylish, designed in a monochrome colour palette with subtle zig zag detailing on the side accompanied with a trendy white thicker sole. Ruairi makes everything easier with a slip-on upper meaning you can forget about the laces. Because, let’s be honest… laces take time to tie and they are more likely to come undone during long runs which is frustrating and can lead to lost time.
The trainers also feature an overlay lacing system, protective toe cap and a cushioned collar and tongue for extra comfort and support. The contoured footbed also gives a better fit while allowing enhanced relief and a traction grip outsole has been added for different terrains and weather conditions.
The Morven lightweight women’s trainers are aesthetically pleasing, designed in a berry and aqua colour palette with subtle zig zag detailing on the side accompanied with a stylish white thicker sole – which has a small speckled pattern near the heel of the shoe. Similarly to Ruairi, Morven makes everything easier with a slip-on upper meaning that there’s no need to tie laces. The trainers have been crafted with a breathable material so that on warmer days, your feet will be kept dry and fresh at all times.
Beatrix women’s trainers look sporty and modern. The stone grey colour palette with highlights of light blue is sophisticated and fresh. Developed with breathable and lightweight materials, the trainers won’t pull you down – quite the opposite, they’ll feel so light that when you’re running you’ll feel invincible. Great for flat road running as well as trail running as they have a traction grip outsole meaning that you’ll be grounded whatever greets you underfoot.
Scree women’s technical trainers are designed for people who are looking to get into running but want to start off brisk-walking first. Scree will set you up for the full day without any worries as they are waterproof and breathable and provide full support for your feet whatever the weather. Slip resistant and supportive, these women’s walking shoes will have your back – and your feet. Featuring a gusseted tongue, protective and durable toe guard and a cushioned and contoured footbed as well as an arch steel shank for maximum support.
So, if you’ve started running and you’re wondering…
When Should I Replace My Running Shoes?
The general advice you’ll find from most experts is that you should change trainers for every 400-600 miles you run and if you push them too long, it can start to have a negative effect on your feet and legs.
Causes of Wear and Tear
While the advice is to change up your running footwear after every 500 or so miles covered, how quickly your trainers wear out is reliant on how you run. Depending on your style of running, your shoes may wear out faster, thus needing to be replaced sooner. If you land heavily on your heels you will wear through the midsole faster, compressing it and leaving it less effective. You can try and counter this with a more balanced stride but beginner runners will likely wear out trainers in this fashion.
Similarly, depending on your running surface, the soles and midsole may wear out faster. If you run on the road, your trainers will wear out faster than on a treadmill or dirt due to the lack of cushioning. Despite all of this, there’s little sense in trying to completely change your running style simply to preserve your trainers, as your way of running is what works for you and updating running shoes is an essential part of any runner’s experience.
Signs of Wear
Even if you’re uncertain how many miles you have clocked up on your trainers, they will start to show some tell-tale signs that let you know an upgrade is needed. Primarily, the effects will be seen on the sole of the shoe but the upper part of the shoe might also visibly indicate whether there are any issues. If your toes are starting to wear through the material or there are tears forming, this is obviously pushing the limits of what the shoes can handle.
Take a look at the sole of your trainers; you’ll see the rubber outsole layer that protects the inner midsole, usually made from EVA. If the rubber outer layer has worn away to the point where the midsole is showing, you know you need a new pair of trainers. This can vary, as mentioned previously road runners will wear through an outsole much faster, while treadmill runners may need to change shoes long before the outsole wears away.
The effects of overuse on the midsole are more difficult to spot. Every time your foot lands on the ground, it compresses the midsole before it springs back into shape, absorbing the force so your foot is spared from doing so. Over time, this midsole won’t return to its original shape and you won’t get the same support. It will be narrower and when compressed you may see crease lines telling you it is worn out and not supporting you like it should.
Your Legs Know Best
At the end of the day though, the way you feel is the best indicator of how your trainers are holding up. Once trainers are worn out, you’ll feel the impact of each step more, and in turn, you’ll be more susceptible to aches and pains. Worn out trainers is a leading cause of injury for runners so if you find that your legs and feet begin aching more than usual, it could be that your trainers aren’t doing their job any longer. At this point, the smart thing to do is to replace them for another pair before the issues become worse.